Firestone Walker Invitational Beer Festival 2019

Discussion in 'Pacific' started by johnInLA, Feb 8, 2019.

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  1. The_ME_Brews

    The_ME_Brews Initiate (0) May 31, 2019 Nevada

    Hi all, 3rd time going and also our last full week in SLO, moving to Vegas next weekend. My wife and I are finally going to hit the bottle share tonight and maybe tomorrow (if we don't just pass out like in years past).

    We have our game plan in place for the festival and if we catch a whale or two along the way, we'll be stoked. Spent way too much time hunting our first year and it worked out so much better not chasing the lines last year. Look for me wearing a ridiculous straw hat with bottle caps and pins stuck to it, I'll gladly offer up a high five haha

    Since we are moving, I do have some bottles I'd like to not deal with packing, one of which is the Stone / Victory / Dogfish Saison du Buff 1.5L Magnum from the Stone Berlin campaign. Is that even worth bringing to the share tonight since I am sure there will be a ton of other stuff?

    I am bringing along some crowlers from Forager, Junkyard (MN) and some other random stuff I haven't packed yet. Can't wait!!!
    BucannonXC5 likes this.
  2. QuakeAttack

    QuakeAttack Pooh-Bah (1,877) Mar 19, 2012 California
    Pooh-Bah Society

    Interesting and potentially loaded question. I'm sure that there have been threads on it in the past. From my point of view, I don't have a problem if it's one person (from a couple) who joins. The problem that I have is when a whole group comes into the line. When this happens 2-3 times, the all of a sudden you have an extra 15 people in front of you. I know that this may be a fine line and the answer is either "no" or "yes", not a middle ground answer like mine.

    At the end, you need to gauge the mood of the line. If someone says something, then may be the group should go to the end of the line. Peace!
    SanDiegoJoe2011 and BucannonXC5 like this.
  3. Skunkdrool

    Skunkdrool Savant (1,124) Jul 31, 2010 California

    Old SLO BBQ is much better. Check them out
    jakecattleco and redblueyellow like this.
  4. Skunkdrool

    Skunkdrool Savant (1,124) Jul 31, 2010 California

    Are you hitting CCB tonight?
  5. TJbeerGuy

    TJbeerGuy Initiate (0) May 27, 2019 California

    Is it smart to get in line before 12 or does the line move fast once it's open?
  6. Fippy_Darkpaw

    Fippy_Darkpaw Zealot (734) Sep 14, 2010 California

    Was just about to ask the same question
  7. Skunkdrool

    Skunkdrool Savant (1,124) Jul 31, 2010 California

    I’m getting there at 12. No use in standing in a line just to move like cattle into the grounds.
  8. ghylk

    ghylk Initiate (0) Aug 3, 2010 California

    They stage the event collaboration beer and dole it out at 11:30, so you want to be there by then. Last year, they handed these out in a few of the indoor locations so you're out of the sun and hanging out with happy people too.
  9. Fern13

    Fern13 Zealot (520) Jan 24, 2013 California

    The past two years, they check you in a bit before 12p and even pour you a beer before they open the gates to everyone.
  10. Ponzu4u

    Ponzu4u Devotee (319) Jun 19, 2015 California

    Last year I'm pretty sure I pulled into the parking lot across the street at 11:55. Walked through the doors at 12 without any line. Had no problem swinging a collab pour on the walk into the main festival with minimal line.
  11. Apollo_Marmot

    Apollo_Marmot Initiate (0) Nov 27, 2018 Nevada

    Ok so everyone just got kicked out of Adeline. Heading to holiday inn to pop some more
    Redondo_Terp likes this.
  12. johnInLA

    johnInLA Pooh-Bah (2,274) Jun 12, 2005 California
    Pooh-Bah Society Trader

    Really, I'm sitting in the Holiday inn by the fire, just came from the Adeline. Happy to share another beer.
  13. abecall98

    abecall98 Initiate (0) Aug 11, 2007 California

    I can’t believe the VIP group already kicked the keg of Handjee.
    BucannonXC5 and chemman14 like this.
  14. Fippy_Darkpaw

    Fippy_Darkpaw Zealot (734) Sep 14, 2010 California

    Any sleeper beers and/or breweries? Lines in general are longer than I anticipated as a first timer.
  15. JustHereForTheBeer

    JustHereForTheBeer Initiate (0) Jun 1, 2019 California

    Lost Abbey is pouring DDG and it’s tasting phenomenal. They haven’t announced it and if you ask them what they’re pouring they won’t say it, but if you call it by name they’ll give it to you. Virtually no line. Best quality of beer to wait time ratio at the event.
    BucannonXC5 likes this.
  16. Fippy_Darkpaw

    Fippy_Darkpaw Zealot (734) Sep 14, 2010 California

    Had some early after word got out, thanks!
    JustHereForTheBeer likes this.
  17. raynmoon

    raynmoon Initiate (0) Aug 13, 2011 Colorado

    I went by the 3floyds tent around 11am and they were not pouring Handjee, just regular. Must've been right when they opened at 12 with initial rush.

    As for sleepers, pretty much every brewer not named Side Project and Three Floyds. Their line's were insanely long, which made it so easy to walk up to tents like Weldwerks and get Medianoche variants, or Revolution and get VSOJ or their new Cuvee de Gratis (favorite of the festival), Jackie O's, Lost Abbey, etc. Hair of the Dog was sandwiched inbetween Modern Times and Mikkeller; so their lines got crazy. You could just walk right up to Hair of the Dog and get Matt, Adam, etc.

    Great Event.
  18. jakecattleco

    jakecattleco Grand Pooh-Bah (3,463) Sep 3, 2008 California
    Pooh-Bah Society Trader

    Outstanding as always! Weather was perfect, and Blueberry Pancake Black Tuesday was my personal favorite.
    warrendietrich2001 likes this.
  19. pumptrick

    pumptrick Initiate (0) Oct 26, 2010 California

    Good to meet sdreaper and chrisjws hope i remembered that right. Dude at the pool with ba hat, forgot your handle. Cheers and thanks to all!
    johnInLA and SDReaper like this.
  20. Fippy_Darkpaw

    Fippy_Darkpaw Zealot (734) Sep 14, 2010 California

    Recap from a first timer:

    Loved it. Initially I was turned off and surpised with the lines. Felt like every brewery had a significant line which surprised me given the quick sellout, figured it was more exclusive but that was just an assumption. Within an hour though most lines mellowed out with the exception of Side Project and a few others which held lines all day.

    Almost every brewery brought their A-Game and there were soooo many good beers not listed on the initial 'beer list'. Standouts of the festival:

    • Revolution: VSOJ and the Cuvee
    • Weldwerks: Coconut Medianoche
    • Bruery: BT variants and the pilsner
    • Alvarado: Everything
    • Modern Times: Everything! Finally tried Monster Tones and it lived up to expectations plus more.
    • Half Acre: Benthic amazinggg
    • Monkish: Can't remember the name but the coconut stout

    Can't say I had a bad beer overall and looking back The Bruery deserved peoples choice. They had a great lineup across a few styles and my group circled back 3x which was more than any other brewery.

    The free food was a HUGE surprise and we were expecting to pay for everything. Loved everything we tried and really took the festival from good to great. My fiancee loved the surplus of restrooms (no porto potties) and if you were willing to walk back to the entrance I'd agree.

    The location was excellent for our hotel and being able to walk from the Best Western to the festival was so convenient.

    Overall we loved it and will be back. This festival was one of the best of all time for me and raises the bar for future festivals. Cheers to all who attended, hope to see you next year!
  21. QuakeAttack

    QuakeAttack Pooh-Bah (1,877) Mar 19, 2012 California
    Pooh-Bah Society

    Second time here. If it's possible, this was even better than when we first attended five years ago. Arrived in line about 11:15 and only had to wait about ten minutes before line moved in. Once we got in, they were pouring the FW and Cigar City calibration (Imperial Brown). Great beer to start off (my wife loved it enough to pick up six of them the next day). Took a couple of pictures, try some gourmet popcorn and chocolate, and entered at noon.

    Went straight to the 3 Floyds and immediately said "Beep it". Proceeded to hit most of the breweries that I wanted and just had a blast with talking with people in line. I'm going to go old school and say my favorites were:

    Cigar City
    Hair of the Dog
    Firestone Walker

    I didn't stand in line for Side Projects and wished I hadn't for Gigantic. My only disappointments were Trillium and Other Half. I'm sure they have good beer, but I wasn't impressed with either.

    Picked up some swag on the way out and sat near the exit people watching for 15 minutes before heading to the hotel.
    BayAreaJoe likes this.
  22. SDReaper

    SDReaper Pooh-Bah (2,078) Aug 15, 2013 California
    Pooh-Bah Trader

    Friday Adelaide share was fun, at least at the grassy knoll. My room was near the pool so headed there when I needed to use the restroom and each time (yes multiple...apparently I had a baby bladder that night) I heard glass hitting the ground, so I am not surprised that Adelaide ended the share exactly at 10pm unlike the previous years where we kept that shit going until almost midnight. I did leave the grassy knoll share basically as the "pool people" joined. It went from drinking with friends and some fun strangers to basically hype boy douchery. I was also working on a nice buzz and had to get up early for breakfast saturday, so had to bail.

    Festival, shit....damn fantastic as always. We tried to hit up each place that was serving tacos just because. I think we decided that the Orale tacqueria had the best ones...definitely the best salsa. Mahrs Brau came in hard with that lager...who knew...a german brewery could make a great german-style beer!?!? =P

    Adelaide saturday post-festival share...great times as always. I did get pulled away from this one around 9ish since I was drunk and the better half was just sober enough to think that we should probably stop drinking.

    Good times, good friends, good beers, good food. Hopefully I can score tickets for next year so I can make it 5yrs in a row.
  23. johnInLA

    johnInLA Pooh-Bah (2,274) Jun 12, 2005 California
    Pooh-Bah Society Trader

    Nice to meet you too.

    Really enjoyed the Adelaide shares. I was at the pool both nights. Lots of great bottles being passed around, which was only exceeded by the generosity in which it was shared. It was great to see some familiar faces, bump into a few friends, and meet many new people. It was a pleasure to share a beer with all you.

    Redondo_Terp and BucannonXC5 like this.
  24. EXCELentTaste

    EXCELentTaste Initiate (0) Mar 11, 2019 California

    It was a pleasure meeting you all. We'll be back next year, luck allowing.
  25. Vitacca

    Vitacca Pooh-Bah (2,034) Sep 15, 2010 Montana
    Pooh-Bah Society Trader

    Great times as always! Hope to keep the tradition alive next year. I had a wine tasting scheduled at Cass at 11 am on Sunday. That was a little rough but I somehow managed to suck it up and get drunk again. Awesome trip!
    BucannonXC5 and reefer_bob like this.
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